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Governor Holcomb weighing concerns about antisemitism bill as deadline to sign it approaches

Lauren Chapman

Lawmakers last week believed they found a compromise on a controversial bill to define and ban antisemitism in public education institutions. Gov. Eric Holcomb said things have changed since then as he weighs whether to sign the measure into law.

The crux of the controversy was HB 1002’s use of a definition of antisemitism from the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance and its accompanying examples, which were originally included in the bill.

Concerns were that the examples conflate criticism of the state of Israel with antisemitism.

The compromise lawmakers passed almost unanimously on the final day of the session used the IHRA definition, but not its examples.

Holcomb said he’s hearing concerns about excluding the examples, which he said could make the bill “counterproductive.”

“And I want to make sure whatever we do, we get it right and we don’t just do it to do it,” Holcomb said.

READ MORE: Lawmakers reach compromise on antisemitism measure, send to governor’s desk

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Attorney General Todd Rokita called on Holcomb to veto the bill earlier this week, and said the bill became a “toothless mess.”

The deadline for the governor to make a decision is March 19. He can sign the bill into law, let it become law without his signature or veto it.

Brandon is our Statehouse bureau chief. Contact him at or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

Copyright 2024 IPB News. To see more, visit .

Brandon Smith is excited to be working for public radio in Indiana. He has previously worked in public radio as a reporter and anchor in mid-Missouri for KBIA Radio out of Columbia. Prior to that, he worked for WSPY Radio in Plano, Illinois as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. His first job in radio was in another state capitol, in Jefferson City, Missouri, as a reporter for three radio stations around Missouri. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.